Swords of Legends Online Aims to Bring Fantasy Action to the West, but There’s a Lot of Competition in the MMORPG Space
I am an MMORPG nerd at heart, and it is hard for me not to get excited whenever I hear news of a new title hitting the scene. Despite plenty of lackluster titles out there, it is cool to see that MMORPGs are still getting made and that the genre hasn’t fully died out in the creativity department. I recently had the chance to play the Alpha Build of the upcoming MMORPG Swords of Legends Online. Despite my initial hesitation due to the poor track record of MMORPGs from that region, I found myself pleasantly surprised with what this adventure had to offer.
While there are a lot of things I didn’t get the chance to experience in my playthrough, there are some positive elements that I want to highlight, along with some parts of the game that I think could use more polish.
As with any MMORPG, we have to talk about the character creator. Swords of Legends Online offers quite a robust amount of options when it comes to character customization. There are ways to customize the character’s individual proportions and options to mix and match base hairstyles with different bangs and accessories. You can also customize the grunts the character makes when attacking. While the character creator may not be as impressive as games such as Black Desert Online, there is enough variety in the creator to make some fairly unique creations.
While playing, I found enjoyment in the amount of NPC-voiced dialogue. Not only was there a decent amount of dialogue in the cutscenes, but even just talking to NPCs to accept the next quest came with pretty solid voice acting. That, combined with the game’s scenery, really made things feel more immersive, and I felt like I was playing in one of those historical fantasy soap operas the adults in my family tend to enjoy.
Swords of Legends Online also has a lot of customization when it comes to the settings and interface. You can move and modify pretty much everything in the HUD, and you can choose what type of information and stats you want to see. While this may seem like a no-brainer, many MMORPGs don’t allow for this level of customization without installing mods, so seeing this built into the base game is very refreshing.
Additionally, you can toggle easily between two types of combat. If you prefer the more traditional select to attack-type of combat found in most MMORPGs, you are more than welcome to play that way. However, you can press a single key to change to the game’s sudo action combat at any time, which makes the gameplay more like a third-person action game. Other games offer the same type of combat, but Swords of Legends Online does a good job of making the transition between the two convenient.
Speaking of combat, many of the skills in the game are skill shots, and there are a lot of different ways to move around and dodge. This adds an element of skill that makes combat feel more engaging. I didn’t get to see how this would play out in PVP, but I definitely am excited to see what crazy things players will be able to do once the game launches.
A downside I found with the combat was that the enemy AI was disappointing. There wasn’t much variety in enemy attack patterns which is a shame because the action combat is a lot of fun and would be more engaging with more challenging enemies to face. This is something I hope gets expanded upon in the final build.
One of the main concerns I have regarding any Asian developed MMORPG is that usually, those RPGs are heavily pay-to-win when it comes to progressing in the game. Things such as gacha systems, purchasable boosts, and equipment with in-game stats tend to be commonplace and really take away from the experience of those games. I was quite worried that Swords of Legends Online would be more of the same, especially when I saw that the Alpha build already had a functioning cash shop with multiple types of in-game currency.
However, from what I saw, the cash shop items are solely cosmetic and contain things such as mounts, weapon skins, and various outfits. While I can’t attest to whether these cash shop items are worth the price, they appear to have had a lot of work put into them, and many of the items come with additional animations and emotes.
Honestly, I was very impressed with what I have seen so far of Swords of Legends Online, and I definitely recommend MMORPG fans keep an eye on this one. There is a lot that the developers have gotten right, and the game has the potential to be great. I am truly excited to see where this game goes.
Swords of Legends Online is coming to PC-via Steam in summer 2021.
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